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Save the Eggs! Why Your Chickens are Eating Their Eggs and How You Can Stop It

June 05, 2017

chicken nest boxWhen it comes to raising chickens, collecting eggs is best done in a timely fashion in order to avoid egg breakage and egg eating. Most hens have typically finished laying their eggs by 10 AM. Therefore, collecting eggs earlier in the morning and during the day is good practice to ensure your eggs’ quality.

However, despite the timeliness of your egg-collecting, damage can still occur. Chickens are omnivores and if left to their own devices may eat just about anything. Chickens commonly eat fruit, vegetables, insects, and their own eggs.

Why do chickens eat their own eggs?

Egg eating can have a negative effect on the business of chicken farmers as it reduces the number of eggs you can sell. A chicken may begin eating their eggs if their calcium levels are low. Calcium deficiency causes a chicken to seek out a supplemental diet of egg shell.

Chickens may also eat their eggs due to accidental discovery. If a chicken coop is crowded, a chicken can very easily break an egg. Once the egg is broken, the chicken may begin to eat the yolk and develop a taste for eggs. Therefore, even if the initial egg breaking was an accident, it may gradually become a behavior in your chicken. And, if left in the coop with the rest of the chickens, the hen’s behavior may rub off on the others further reducing the number of eggs you can collect.

How to combat egg eating

Before ruling your hen’s egg eating behavior as a character flaw, be sure they’re not suffering from a health issue. Provide your chicken with free-choice oyster shell, which is high in calcium, in the event that your hen is eating their eggs because they are calcium deficient.

Another issue that may be the cause of your hen’s egg eating is boredom. Be sure to provide your chickens with enough space and pasture to roam around. Additionally, collect the eggs at least twice a day to keep your chickens from being tempted to break them.

A great way to ensure the safety of your eggs in the vicinity of your egg-eating hen is to utilize a metal chicken nest box. Best Next Box provides the sale of a metal chicken nest box, which is not only easy to assemble in contrast to other chicken nest boxes but also is able to convert into a front or rear-facing rollaway nest box. With a rollaway feature and an egg guard that is faced toward the egg-laying area, your eggs will be protected from damage and egg-eating.

Egg eating can reduce your farm’s productivity and egg sales. Ensure your chickens are healthy and happy and that they are getting enough exercise. When a chicken begins to eat their eggs, check for calcium deficiency and utilize the benefits of chicken nesting boxes to protect your eggs from damage.